Reshuffle of Chinese military academies aims to bring institutions closer to real combat: experts

By Zhang Hui Source:Global Times Published: 2017/7/20 22:33:39

Reform aims to bring institutions closer to real combat: experts

The ongoing reform of military academies which has seen the creation of three reshuffled military institutions is aimed at bringing military students closer to real combat and making them ready for modern, high-tech warfare, military experts said Thursday.

The reshuffle in the three institutions, the People's Liberation Army (PLA) Academy of Military Science, the National Defense University of the PLA and the National University of Defense Technology, was unveiled Wednesday, with Chinese President Xi Jinping calling the reshuffling a vital decision to realize the Chinese Dream and build a stronger army at a ceremony to mark the reshuffling of the institutions.

Xi, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China  Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission (CMC), said that China must make greater efforts to build stronger armed forces and boost combat capability through science and technology innovations to gain a competitive initiative, the Xinhua News Agency reported Wednesday.

"It takes first-class military talent, theory, and science and technology to build the PLA into a world-leading military," Xi said.

"Science and technology is the core fighting capacity in modern warfare," he noted.

Li Jie, a Beijing-based naval expert, told the Global Times on Thursday that the reform of military academies is meant to bring the academies closer to real combat and build an army that is able to fight and win wars.

A Wuhan-based military professor who requested anonymity told the Global Times that the reshuffle followed the principle of fewer academies with greater relevance to the military.

"Academies and universities with similar specializations, for instance, telecommunication universities, will be merged to share information and reduce redundant units. Meanwhile, general majors, such as accounting, will be eliminated in military academies to better focus on military-related majors, such as command and military technology," the professor said.

She added that the reshuffle is in line with China's comprehensive military reform launched in 2015, which will see a reduction of 300,000 troops by the end of 2017.

The Chinese military authority has just reshuffled its military education institutions as part of an ongoing military reform in recent years to build a stronger military and boost real-combat capability, Xinhua reported.

Following the reform, there are now 43 military education institutions, including two directly under the CMC, 35 specialized in specific armed services, and six of armed police forces.

"Merging academies and majors is the first step of the military academy reform. The reform will be further deepened to closely connect academies with the military, and military officers and instructors with practical experience will be invited to academies to share front-line experience," said the anonymous expert. 

Newspaper headline: Reshuffle of military academies unveiled


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